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How can I get the most out of my abdominal exercises?

Do this to get the most out of your abdominal workout:

  • Keep the muscles tight throughout the movement. You never want to relax the muscle tension, so you shouldn't rest during a rep, whether at the bottom or the top of the movement. Don't rest or bounce on the floor or bench during a set.
  • Exhale as you contract your abs on the upward movement. This should be a complete exhalation, almost as if someone punched you in the stomach. Inhale as you lower your body to finish the rep. Breathe with every rep.
  • Remember that the range of motion for abs is very short. Much of the movement in a full crunch is performed by the hip flexors. If your goal is to isolate your abs entirely, focus only on the crunching of the abs, not on lifting your entire torso until it is upright. For added intensity, bring your obliques into play, crunch from side to side as you do the movement.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.